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Walmart recently awarded the EAST Initiative, an education non-profit organization, with a $36,700 grant to fight hunger through science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
LITTLE ROCK, ARK. -- Walmart recently awarded the EAST Initiative, an education non-profit organization, with a $36,700 grant to fight hunger through science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The sophistication of the projects allows students to engage in a social issue to solve real world problems. Environmental and Spatial Technology (EAST) classrooms challenge students to “see a problem, find a solution,” and students identified hunger as a serious issue to address.
EAST students actively collaborate with community partners to identify gaps in resources. Examples of projects supported by this grant to fight hunger include food desert mapping and hydroponic greenhouses to supply fresh food to local cafeterias. "We are extremely appreciative of the support we received from Walmart. This will allow EAST to serve as a catalyst for youth to take action through student-driven solutions," said Dr. Angela Kremers, Senior Director of Corporate Strategy at EAST.
Communities with local EAST programs benefit enormously. An economic impact study completed at the University of Central Arkansas found that EAST students complete over 1.5 million service hours each year with an economic impact of over $15 million. "Students are empowered to expand and explore projects and partnerships for lasting change in their community," said Matt Dozier, EAST President and CEO, “and this award will allow EAST students to address one of the most critical issues facing our communities, hunger.”